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Purchase And Disinfection Of Potato Planting Material
Purchase And Disinfection Of Potato Planting Material

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Video: Profitable Potato Farming: 3.1 Potato Growing. D - Irrigation 2023, February
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How to grow a good harvest of delicious potatoes. Part 1

Such a harvest is pleasant to dig
Such a harvest is pleasant to dig

Such a harvest is pleasant to dig

Harvest tubers

It is hard to imagine how they lived in Russia without potatoes. Thanks to Peter I for bringing and distributing it throughout Russia! Of course, the most delicious potatoes are those that you have grown yourself. You can't even compare it with a purchased one! Moreover, each potato variety has its own unique taste. Therefore, gardeners carefully select potato varieties, taking into account their individual taste needs. For example, I really like varieties of potatoes with yellow flesh, dense and non-crumbly.

There are as many ways of growing potatoes as there are gardeners. Most gardeners cultivate it in the usual - classical way with planting tubers in the soil, hilling, weeding, etc. But there are those who like to experiment. Some grow it under hay, others in bags, others prepare ditches in autumn and put plant residues there, and then plant tubers there, collecting decent yields.

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Whatever methods we use when growing our second bread - they are all aimed, first of all, at increasing soil fertility on the site. It depends on her what kind of harvest we harvest. Most gardeners, in the absence of organic fertilizers, improve the quality of the soil in this way. However, these are very time consuming activities. I have never had any problems with the acquisition of manure, therefore I adhere to the almost classical methods of growing tubers

First experience

The crisis of the 90s forced all of us to grow our own potatoes. First, graded sprouted tubers were planted according to the residual principle, which they bought in a store for food. The harvest was scanty, but varietal tubers at that time could not be purchased. As soon as the first varietal planting material from Holland began to arrive in Russia, I began to purchase all of its novelties.

The first potato varieties to impress with their record harvest were Santa and Desiree. 33-35 tubers were harvested from one plant (a ten-liter bucket with a slide was obtained from two plants). This number of tubers in the nest is a benchmark for me when choosing potato varieties and when culling lean plants. The tubers were large, even, clean and very tasty.

Plants of these varieties were noticeably different from the rest of the potato plantings and externally: the bushes are powerful, the leaves are large and parallel to the ground, the flowers were also much larger. Potato plants, like soldiers on a parade, stood in a row, and this part of the garden looked very elegant. Our site was then at the stage of development and development - the land had just been freed from grassy vegetation, so the soil was rested, and there were no diseases.

Soil fertility had to be increased annually. To do this, I dug a number of holes, poured there two handfuls of compost and rotted manure, a pinch of azofoska, 2 tablespoons of "Giant". She mixed all this with her hand, sprinkled it with earth, laid it on top of the tubers, which she then covered with a handful of compost. And from above she raked the earth with a rake. After sprouting, I spud potatoes twice.

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In a drought, it was watered, and at the beginning of flowering, it was fed twice with liquid manure with an interval of 10 days. After flowering, the potatoes were watered with a pink solution of potassium permanganate under each bush. I had to bow to potatoes many times. Therefore, the harvest was then huge, despite the fact that they planted 10 tubers of each variety. Later I learned that all Dutch potato varieties require high agronomic measures, which they were provided with.

Over time, I had to abandon these varieties. Desiree turned out to be unstable to late blight, and Santa began to degenerate over time, and he was not on sale for a long time to update the planting material. But now the Santa variety again takes pride of place in my garden

Fertile soil - high yield

For 23 years, the soil has been ennobled so much that now we are planting potatoes under a shovel - the soil layer has been raised by 30 cm - it has become so loose that during cultivation the walk-behind tractor simply drowns in it. The father even had to put on an extra pair of cultivators on it. But we still continue to increase the fertility of the soil on our site every year. In the fall, we bring in fresh manure. Previously, it was cow manure, but after the nearby farm was closed, we bring horse manure from the equestrian sports base (it is with sawdust). We spread it in a layer of at least 20 cm over the entire arable land, and the father cultivates the soil with a walk-behind tractor. In the spring, in the same way, we introduce completely unripe compost.

We also take compost seriously: in the first season we add weeds, manure and other organic waste to the compost heap, in the second it rotates, and in the third year we use it. He does not have time to rot before flowing. This compost contains minor plant residues. When it is introduced into the soil in the spring, the process of decomposition of organic matter takes place directly in the garden.

At the same time, the soil heats up faster, keeps warm (the effect of a hot bed is obtained), retains moisture well - this is very important for our sandy soil. And, in addition, carbon dioxide is released, which is necessary for plants to grow better. By the way, sprouted potatoes here on such heating rise earlier than those of our neighbors. The first shoots appear on the fifth day after planting, and the rest - after 7-8 days. We plant potatoes only in warm soil.

Previously, it was on the twentieth of May, now we plant after May 15, because the soil warms up faster from compost. And necessarily on the day of the root according to the lunar sowing calendar. Until the bird cherry blossoms, I will not plant potatoes. But I'm guided by the bird cherry, which bloomed not in the city, but not far from my site.

Many neighbors are trying to plant potatoes already on May 9, but the soil is still cold, and because of this, their potatoes are annually affected by late blight, which then spreads throughout the village. Our potatoes are affected by late blight in the last turn, and then only partially, mainly these varieties are weakly resistant to this disease. The crop rotation cannot be fully observed, since we have fewer beds than the space allocated for potatoes, but they move every year.

Since I make a lot of hot beds every year, the fertile soil layer there is constantly increasing, now it has already been created to a depth of more than two shovel bayonets. In a few years, the soil throughout the entire plot will be loose and fertile to a depth of 70-80 cm, which will undoubtedly affect the yield. After harvesting, my father cultivates the soil with a walk-behind tractor, and on the same day I sow white mustard seeds there.

In time, this occurs after August 20. The birds have not yet flown away, and therefore can completely peck up all the seeds. To prevent this from happening, I carefully close the mustard seeds with a rake into the soil, water it (from a hose with a shower nozzle) and cover it with spunbond, and if it is not enough, then with a transparent plastic wrap. If this is not done, then all the seeds will be pecked.

It is not clear why exactly at the end of August the birds eat the seeds of white mustard and its seedlings, while they do not touch the sown seeds of this culture from spring to mid-August? Once I sowed mustard like that, and in two days the birds ate up all the seeds. Mustard must be sown before the end of August, that is, the sooner the better. In September it is too late to sow it, because the weather is cold, the seeds will germinate for a long time, and the plants will develop very slowly.

Before frosts: in late October - early November (I am guided by the weather), my father mows the mustard with a trimmer (it is immediately crushed), additionally scatters horse manure in the same place, and I spray the soil with a solution of Abiga-Peak (according to the instructions), and immediately after that the soil is cultivated with a walk-behind tractor. So with the help of a catch crop (white mustard) we try to keep the crop rotation.

Mustard is a plant of the cabbage family (the former name of the family is cruciferous) and can be sick with keel, which affects all types of cabbage, but since I do not grow cabbage, therefore I have nothing to fear. I use Abiga-Peak solution against phytophthora. I never do liming of the soil, because I noticed that black and common scab appears on the tubers from this agricultural technique. When a black scab is affected, black growths appear on the tubers, similar to lumps of soil, and when an ordinary scab is affected, growths in the form of convex ulcers appear. These diseases do not affect the taste of tubers in any way, but the damage to the crop from them will be significant.

Of course, in addition to liming the soil, the spread of black scab is affected by planting tubers in cold soil, and planting at great depths, as well as rainy weather in spring. The defeat of tubers with this disease also causes a lack of potassium in the soil. Ash contains potassium and other beneficial trace elements, but it limes the soil, which also contributes to the spread of black scab. Therefore, I apply potassium magnesium under the potatoes, I think this potash fertilizer is the best for applying under potatoes and other crops. It contains potassium, magnesium, sulfur.

It dissolves quickly and is effective on all types of soil, regardless of its acidity. Common scab forms on tubers at temperatures above + 26 ° C with low soil moisture. An outbreak of this disease usually occurs in hot and dry summers if potato plantings are not watered. Fresh manure applied in the year of planting also contributes to the appearance of common scab. When mineral fertilizers are applied, a slight liming of the soil occurs, because during their production, gypsum is used as a filler, which deoxidizes the soil.

If you carefully study the percentage of the active substance and ballast content in the mineral fertilizer on the package, it turns out that in simple superphosphate of gypsum, limestone and unreacted phosphorite or apatite in the fertilizer production process - 80%. I add compost to the garden, to which I add peat in small quantities, so the acidity of the soil in my area is always normal. By the way, I noticed that potatoes do better on soil with acidity slightly above normal.

Potato bed
Potato bed

Potato bed

Choosing a variety is a serious matter

The yield of potatoes is influenced not only by the fertility of the soil on the site, but also by the correctly selected variety, which must be zoned and resistant to diseases observed in our region. Unfortunately, many varieties in the North-West are affected by late blight, I refuse such varieties. If the appearance of scab can be prevented, then late blight spreads through the air.

In many catalogs of the proposed potato varieties, they write that the variety is resistant to this disease, but this does not mean that the plant will not get sick with late blight in your area. Within the Leningrad Region, different amounts of precipitation fall out (different moisture is observed), and for some, areas in the former drained swamps are wetter there. What can I say, within the same gardening or village, the microclimate can differ. For example, on our site, everything blooms and ripens one week later than in the center of the village (we are on its outskirts). Winds often blow here when the village is calm.

But this location is not a disadvantage for our site. When return frosts occur in May, trees are already blooming in the village, and then there is no harvest, but here they bloom later, and we get away from this trouble. As a result, minus the location of the site turns into a big plus. And all gardeners need to focus on the microclimate of their site, and for this it is important to be observant.

Late blight is the most common and dangerous disease. It does its worst damage in cold and humid summers. When the plant is affected by this disease, the lower leaves first turn dark green, then the spots turn brown, and later a white bloom appears on the underside of the leaf. To reduce the damage (it is impossible to completely get rid of it, because it appears in the neighbors), a number of preventive measures have to be taken from this scourge.

Acquisition and disinfection of planting material

I buy planting material at exhibitions and in seed shops. I try at least five new varieties every year. I plant them separately from the rest of the potatoes, so that it is more convenient to evaluate the advantages and disadvantages of varieties, and the care of these tubers is special. I pay more attention to new varieties, because in the first year of planting they must show their yield and resistance to diseases. I consider the harvest of the first year of planting the maximum for this variety.

In subsequent years I will compare the number of tubers harvested from one plant, and if there are half of them, then I will reject the variety. Then I will again purchase new tubers of the same variety, if I liked it for its taste. In the first two years, having got to a new site, almost every potato variety, in most cases, amazes with an abundance of harvest. In subsequent years, the variety gradually begins to degenerate even with a high level of agricultural technology.

Every year I plant at least twenty varieties of potatoes, all of which have different acquisition dates. Some of them are new, others I have planted for the second time, some I grow up to five or six years, which means that they have shown themselves very well. Thanks to this rotation of varieties, we always reap a good harvest, even if some variety has degenerated.

I acquire new varieties in small quantities - 10 tubers each. I choose them from the bag myself, if the sellers do not allow this, then I will not buy from them. When examining a tuber, I choose only large specimens, without diseases, mechanical damage and with a large number of eyes. If they are very dirty or dry soil on them, then they are of poor quality and most often with diseases.

This is how sellers disguise unfit planting material. In the store I take a check so that if a disease is found at home (after washing), you can return the goods back to the store. If I buy varieties at an exhibition, then immediately carefully wash the tubers (there are sinks at the exhibitions). And if I find sick tubers, I immediately return them back. Such sellers need to be trained so as not to sell low-quality planting material, because varietal potatoes are not cheap.

Bringing my purchases home, I immediately again washed the potatoes with laundry soap (72%) with a sponge. Then I keep it in a solution of potassium permanganate of medium concentration for 20 minutes. Then I carry out the same treatment in Aktara solution (according to the instructions). So I disinfect the planting material from diseases and pests. I want to tell novice gardeners that this must be done, otherwise you can bring a lot of problems into the garden. It is better to do prevention than to treat the soil on the site for many years!

Such prevention should be taken very seriously. We have already acquired too many diseases and pests in our agriculture in recent years. And all this from the planting material received from other states. I know that the customs offices of many countries very carefully check the planting material supplied to them, as well as vegetables and fruits, so as not to introduce pests.

I read that in Australia, customs will check the luggage of every person entering the country. And if in doubt, the luggage can be sprayed with disinfectant. The import of plants and animals is prohibited in this state, as well as the export of rare local species is also prohibited. This is necessary to prevent the penetration of microorganisms and insects to the continent, which can have an adverse effect on the local ecosystem. Australia has suffered more than others from the movement of new species of plants and animals from other continents, so this has been closely monitored there for many years.

Unfortunately, in our country, too little attention is paid to such preventive measures, despite the fact that there are a number of decrees obliging to check the imported planting material for all those entering from abroad.

Read part 2. Preparation and planting of potato tubers →

"How to Grow a Good Harvest of Delicious Potatoes"

  • Part 1. Purchase and disinfection of potato planting material
  • Part 2. Preparation and planting of potato tubers
  • Part 3. Diseases and pests of potatoes
  • Part 4. Potato harvest by June
  • Part 5. Analysis of potato varieties at the end of the summer

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